This adaptive reuse included the conversion of the historic seven-story O’Donnell Shoe Company building in downtown Saint Paul into 70 affordable efficiency, one- and two-bedroom apartments. The historic character of the structure’s concrete mushroom columns is celebrated in the wide, daylit corridors. Community spaces are located in a new first-floor addition with windows that provide a connection with both the street and the interior courtyard.
The design closely followed National Park Service and State Historic Preservation Office guidelines for historic preservation while also pursuing several sustainable features under the LEED certification program. In addition to the environmental benefits provided by preserving and reusing an existing building in a walkable neighborhood close to services, amenities, and transit, the project employed other sustainability strategies, including innovative landscape features, a vegetative roof, and an energy-efficient heating and cooling system.